“Two-Minute Tuesdays” are a series of micro-stories written in five minutes or less. Consider them “public practice,” like that guy who shoots free throws in the park. Prompts are supplied at the bottom in case you want to try your own hand at one of them.
The Rose Garden (Part 1)
Once upon a time, a young man lived by himself in a village in a house he’d inherited from his parents. He was the village schoolteacher, but behind his house was his true passion: a closely-guarded rose garden, safe behind a tall fence. Before and after school he spent his time there, planting, watering, and pruning the flowers that he was known for.
Also in this village was a young woman that he was in love with. Every Friday he picked the most beautiful rose in his garden and brought it to her, and they went for a walk in the forest. Soon they were engaged to be married.
But tragedy struck. The young woman was run over by a runaway carriage one afternoon and died. The schoolteacher cried all night, and when he awoke in the morning his beautiful garden had withered and died.
Several years went by. Try as he might, the schoolteacher wasn’t able to grow a single flower in his garden; it remained as black and dead as the day his love had died. He boarded up the gate and wouldn’t let anyone else see what was inside.
Eventually the village grew into a town, and the schoolhouse was expanded with a second room. Another teacher was hired, a lovely young woman who was also secretly a witch. She fell in love with the schoolteacher, and after asking delicately around town discovered the story of the rose garden.
One day, after classes, the witch approached the schoolteacher. “I heard you grow the most lovely roses. Would you bring me one tomorrow?”
The man was startled. “Uh . . . no! I can’t!” And he hurried home before she could say another word.
(To be continued)
(Prompt: Write a fairy tale.)